'Reopen Buffalo' site launched as city emerges from shutdown

Resource to assist small businesses and consumers as Buffalo reopens

WBEN Newsroom
May 24, 2020 - 7:16 pm
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown

Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown/WBEN Photo

Buffalo, NY (WBEN) – Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown has announced a new online resource for small businesses as the Western New York economy begins the reactivation process of Phase One.

During this difficult time, communication with small businesses is more important than ever. The webpage, Reopen Buffalo, aims to enhance communication with small businesses by
creating a registry where small businesses can share information about their reopening status,

“It’ll be an easy resource that the community can go to to see all the businesses that are reopened in the city of Buffalo, what the services are, what the hours are, what the products are," the Mayor told WBEN on Hardline Sunday.

Once a business id registered, the Mayor’s Office of Strategic Planning will continuously push out information to small businesses about critical updates for reopening, new economic development resources, and strategies being pursued by the City government to assist small businesses, such as the strategy to allow the use of streets and sidewalks so that a small business can operate while meeting social distancing requirements.

Mayor Brown stated, “After more than two months, we are finally able to slowly and gradually enter first phase of economic recovery. Running a small business is inherently difficult, but now it is more difficult than ever as business owners seek to reconnect with their customers in a way that safeguards employees, customers, and the general public from COVID-19. My Administration will stand with small businesses to protect public health while growing our economy. I encourage the community to do its part in this reopening by doing more to buy from locally-owned small businesses in Buffalo.”

The webpage also connects business owners to a slew of resources including: Business Health and Safely Guidelines, Bid Opportunities, Minority and Women-owned Business Services, New York Forward information, and a guide on how to start a small business in the City of Buffalo.

“It provides all the information that businesses need in one easy to use site," Brown told WBEN.

Mayor Brown and the City of Buffalo’s Office of Strategic Planning are following Governor Cuomo’s guidelines to ensure that City residents can get back to work without spreading COVID-19 or overwhelming our local hospitals. While the City of Buffalo begins Phase One of reopening, the Brown Administration will continue to offer innovative methods for conducting business as essential businesses continue operating, and many development and infrastructure projects move forward.

The general public will also benefit from an interactive map and directory that can be accessed to find businesses they can support as our economic momentum returns. Locally-owned businesses are identified with a Buffalo icon on the map.

Reopen Buffalo also features other resources, including links to the City’s online permits and licenses portal, applicati ons for Mayor Brown’s On-Street Drive-Thru initiative, Tax Exemptions, Excelsior Grant Fund, and much more. The City of Buffalo’s Office of Strategic Planning has been working on this website over several weeks to ensure that it is a comprehensive economic guide for business owners looking to re-enter or become part of the City’s diverse economy.

The webpage will be updated on a regular basis to share the most up-to-date information on the reopening and resources as they become available. Small businesses and the community are encouraged to check back regularly. If a business is interested in being added to this resource, they can register through a link on the webpage or call 3-1-1.

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